Wine Spectator selected The Grapes of Roth Merlot 2010 by Wölffer Estate for Top 100 wines of 2015. At number 64, The Grapes of Roth by Wölffer Estate stands amongst the best wineries in the world, and is a pioneer for the Long Island region. After receiving two 94 points ratings in The Wine Advocate (highest scores on the East Coast) this summer for both of Wölffer Estate’s dessert wines, Diosa 2012 and Desencia 2012, we are thrilled by this recognition. The Wine Spectator’s annual list highlights successful wineries, regions and vintages around the world. We are not only amongst the top 100 wines in the world, but also the first and only Long Island winery to ever make the list.
Each year since 1988, Wine Spectator editors review close to 20,000 wines and by December select their Top 100 based on “quality, value, availability and excitement.” All of the wines are tasted blindly to evaluate quality and excitement. Once the wines are revealed, they look for the winning X-factor; beyond balanced acidity and tannins with fruit and mouth-feel, the Top 100 Wines possess a greater package of balance – from the value to the region, to the winemaker and the winery’s legacy.
What does a perfectly balanced and rounded gem taste like? Wine Spectator editors describe The Grapes of Roth by Wolffer Estate as: “A polished texture carries balanced flavors of tart cherry, pomegranate, toasted hazelnut and espresso in this expressive red. Features firm, well-integrated tannins and lively acidity. Elegant.”
Winemaker, Roman Roth, notes 2010 was dry and warm, and as a result was one of the great growing seasons in the history of growing grapes on Long Island, where he has made wine since 1992. Before coming to Long Island, Roman’s experience spanned from Germany to California and Australia. Roman crafted the signature Wölffer style of elegance and vibrancy, developing and capturing the best of Long Island’s terroir.
The fruit for this merlot was carefully hand-harvested late in the season, and the grapes underwent further selection on our sorting table, coming in with “dream numbers,” according to Roman and Vineyard manager Richie Pisacano. After 28 days of maceration and 21 months of oak maturation, the wine was bottled unfilted and unfined.
Dark red, almost black in color, this wine is rich with aromas of cassis, clove, blackberry, black pepper and licorice. Its mouth-feel is lush and concentrated, making a perfect food-friendly wine. Roth recommends Long Island-raised duck for a classic regional pairing particularly suited for this wine. There is a great subtlety from beginning to end and the finish is long, powerful with an underlying minerality. Drink it with filet or prime rib, venison, hard rind cheeses and decadent chocolate desserts to get the full palate of dark chocolate, black cherry and prune notes backed by toasted oak.
The Grapes of Roth is among the premium wines of the Wölffer portfolio. Merlot is the signature red variety of Long Island. In good vintages and with loving care in the vineyard and cellar, this wine stands with the very best in the world. Our 2010 vintage is a fantastic example, but since it is sold out, time to get your hands on 2011 before it goes as well! As Roman always says: “Consistency is the key to success!”